Synopses & Reviews
From America to the Middle East and back again — the sparkling story of one girl’s childhood, by an exciting new voice in literary fiction.
In this fresh, funny, and fearless debut novel, Randa Jarrar chronicles the coming-of-age of Nidali, one of the most unique and irrepressible narrators in contemporary fiction. Born in 1970s Boston to an Egyptian-Greek mother and a Palestinian father, the rebellious Nidali — whose name is a feminization of the word "struggle" — soon moves to a very different life in Kuwait. There the family leads a mildly eccentric middle-class existence until the Iraqi invasion drives them first to Egypt and then to Texas. This critically acclaimed debut novel is set to capture the hearts of everyone who has ever wondered what their own map of home might look like.
"Randa Jarrar takes all the sappy, beloved cliches about ‘where you hang your hat’ and blows them to smithereens in her energizing, caustically comic debut novel." The Christian Science Monitor
"A Map of Home will leave you laughing out loud." Entertainment Weekly
"[An] extraordinary debut... Jarrar’s lack of sentimentality, and her wry sense of humor, make Home a treasure." People (four stars)
About the Author
Randa Jarrar was born in Chicago in 1978. She grew up in Kuwait and Egypt, and moved back to the U.S. at thirteen. She is a writer and translator whose honors include the Million Writers Award, the Avery Hopwood and Jule Hopwood Award and the Geoffrey James Gosling Prize. Her fiction has appeared in Ploughshares as well as in numerous journals and anthologies. Her translations from the Arabic have appeared in Words Without Borders: The World Through the Eyes of Writers; recently, she translated Hassan Daoud’s novel, The Year of the Revolutionary New Bread-Making Machine. She currently lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan. A Map of Home is her first novel.